Grappling hook

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( Grappling hook.png
Name grappling hook
Appearance iron hook
Damage vs. small 1d2
Damage vs. large 1d6
To-hit bonus +0
Weapon skill flail
Size one-handed
Base price 50 zm
(+10/positive
enchant)
Weight 30
Material iron

A grappling hook is a tool that is also a weapon. When unidentified, it appears as an iron hook. It uses the flail skill.

You can apply a grappling hook to a location up to a distance determined by your skill in the use of flails:

.......
.ESUSE.
.SUUUS.
.UU@UU.
.SUUUS.
.ESUSE.
.......

You can only apply the hook at a space you can see without astral vision. [1]

You can attempt to grab an item on that square, drag yourself towards a spot on the ground, attack a monster, drag a tiny monster to you, or you may end up accidentally hitting yourself (doing 10-19 points of damage). You cannot hit yourself if you are Skilled or Expert.

When grabbing an item, you will always snag the item that was last dropped on that square. Only one item from the stack at a time can be snagged this way.[2] This can be used to snag items from the ground while levitating.

When dragging yourself towards the ground, you will only be dragged one square. If you are trapped, you instead remain trapped and may take further damage from the trap. [3]

A tiny monster may be dragged with a 25% probability; otherwise, it is simply hit. Larger monsters are always hit. When grappling a monster that is large, larger or strong, there is a 25% chance that you will be pulled toward the ground instead, unless the space has water or air, in which case there is no effect. [4]

If you are Unskilled or Basic, there are equal chances of nothing happening, hitting an item, hitting a monster, hitting the ground, or hooking yourself. [5] If you are at least Skilled you can select whether you are aiming for an item, monster or the surface. If Skilled, you have a 50% chance of achieving what you try to; if Expert, 95%; otherwise there are equal chances of each outcome other than hooking yourself. If you can't decide which to choose, you may type enter to trigger a random effect.

If you get an item or monster and there is no such thing present on the target space, nothing happens.

Encyclopaedia entry

But as for Queequeg -- why, Queequeg sat there among them --
at the head of the table, too, it so chanced; as cool as an
icicle. To be sure I cannot say much for his breeding. His
greatest admirer could not have cordially justified his
bringing his harpoon into breakfast with him, and using it
there without ceremony; reaching over the table with it, to
the imminent jeopardy of many heads, and grappling the
beefsteaks towards him.

[ Moby Dick, by Herman Melville ]

Variants

In Slash'EM Extended, the grappling hook is part of the levitator race's starting inventory. Since the levitator is permanently levitating and therefore unable to pick up items normally, the grappling hook is an important tool that the player will probably have to use in order to get items. For the levitator specifically, hooking oneself cannot happen, making it much safer to use the hook. However, the levitator race doesn't automatically get the flail skill; it's a good idea to combine it with a role that has it, and try to reach Expert to greatly reduce the amount of tries it takes to snatch an item.